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green beer for st. patrick's day because they actually spent money for a beer distributing company to upgrade their trucks. now last i looked that business made money. we shouldn't be subsidizing it. this is a good amendment. the body should adopt the amendment and help cut our deficit and help stop sending money to corporations that simply don't need our help. . the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana. mr. visclosky: i move to strike the last word. i rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment and it would appear there will be others differing in amounts, but very similar in intent. and i think they do not represent the wise energy policy
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for this country. the first point i would make is that the bill includes a reduction of $491 million for the overall renewable program from fiscal year 2011, even a more significant reduction compared to fiscal year 2010. and so the committee, i believe, fully recognizes its responsibilities to be careful fiscally. but i must also indicate that someone i have a great deal of respect for, my senior senator from my state, senator lugar, has characterized our energy problem as a national security problem. we all recognize it is an economic problem. we can debate the environmental aspects. i think it is an environmental problem itself, but no one can
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dispute it is a national security issue relative to where we are buying so many of our petroleum products. and to gain energy independence, we are going to need a different matrix of energy sources. much of our energy is produced from coal and oil and it is not healthy to our national security. we need to diversify. in this instance, the committee has recognized and continues to make an investment in our economic, our job and our energy future and i do oppose the gentleman's amendment. and i would yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey rise? mr. frelinghuysen: move to strike the last word. i would like to associate my remarks with those of the ranking member.
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this amendment would slash even more than we did in our committee, the vehicle technologies program. and this energy efficiency renewable account, there is almost nothing left in the account now. maybe the desire is to put this account out of business, but i think it's unwise. we made the tough choices. we have held our hearings. we have had the input and i would ask those to oppose the amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment by the gentleman from georgia. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the gentleman from georgia. the gentleman from vermont. jch indiana. pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the
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amendment offered by the gentleman from georgia will be postponed. the gentleman from vermont. mr. welch: thank you, mr. speaker, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. welch of vermont, page 23, line 4, after the dollar amount, insert increased by $491 million, page 33, line 20, after the dollar amount, insert reduced by $491 million. the chair: the gentleman from vermont is recognized for five minutes. mr. welch: i have been sitting here listening to what i think is a very interesting debate, what's the role that the taxpayer through this body should play in trying to steer an energy policy towards efficiency. there are a lot of contentious debates we have had about energy policy and about climate change. one of the areas that i found
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that we have frequently had common grouped is that less is more, whatever the source of energy that you use or favor, if a consumer is able to use less oil, that's what we rely on in vermont to heat our homes or less electricity that's generated by nuke, you can save money. and the efficiency title is one that gives us an opportunity to try to promote efficiency where doing so has significant benefits. last year, mr. speaker, we passed in this house but failed in the senate, an energy efficiency bill that would have given homeowners an incentive to put money into home retrofits and the government would have matched that. you would have had an all-in situation. when you are retrofitting your home, you are using local
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contractors. they need work and work that is done locally in your district and mine. 95% of the materials that are used in any kind of efficiency work in a commercial building or home building are manufactured in america. even without the debate of make it in america, we would be getting the benefit of manufacturing in america. and it would have the impact of saving homeowners money. that particular bill would have saved $10 billion in energy bills over 10 years. that is real savings for homeowners. the bill that's brought before the floor makes a decision to dramatically cut the efficiency title by about 27% or $491 million. what my amendment would do is propose to restore that money and take that from the nuclear security weapons activities
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account, which has $7.1 billion. so diverting the amount of money this amendment proposes would not wipe out that account in any way. you know, i think all of us would like to find some places we can work together despite the very significant differences between us. and efficiency, i found in the last congress, was one of those areas we had some potential to do it. ranking member -- then-ranking member bart ton was supportive of these efforts. and the money in this title actually does end up promoting projects back in your district and mine. i will give some examples and they are small things, but important. burlington, vermont, we had a program through this title that helped a community market install 136 solar panels on the
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roof of the city market and generated 30 kilo what thes of power and created jobs and reduced their costs and local, local people doing it. and water bury, home for seniors was retrofitted and improved with insulation. it's not rocket science, but it's real. real vermonters doing the insulation work and insulation manufactured in america and made the seniors warmer and made their bill lower. that kind of thing can happen all around. way up by the canadian border, auburn star farms got loans and grants from a home star energy program and allowed them to build a digest ter and will produce biogas to produce electricity and help the bottom line of that farm that is
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struggling with high costs. the real question before us is do we want to promote energy efficiency at the local level. all the various ways that people can save money, when we know that in your district or mine, republican, democrat or independent, we have out of work contractors and homeowners who want to save money and manufacturers who want to sell their goods. i urge the body to consider favorably the amendment that is before you and mr. speaker, thank you. i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. frelinghuysen: i move to strike the last word and rise in opposition. let me salute the gentleman from vermont. vermonters are often characterized as being independent and self-sufficient and self-reliant.
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i have to note for the record that your 72% reliant on nuclear power in vermont. there may be other things dish you might want to check on that. i rise in opposition to the amendment because this decreases funds in order to increase the efficiency in renewable account. modernization of the nuclear complex is a critical national security priority and must be funded and doesn't matter whether it is the obama administration or the bush administration. all of our administrations are working to make sure that we have a nuclear stockpile that is safe, reliable and verifyable. with years of stagnant funding we have put off the investments that are needed to sustain our nuclear capabilities into the
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future. the funding in our bill for weapons activities is both now as a result now, both timely and urgent. when every tax dollar must be spent well, we cannot enact cuts that will risk our national security while throwing money at poorly-planned programs that have large balances which i mentioned earlier, $9 billion in the account of unspent stimulus money. i rise in opposition to the amendment and urge my colleagues to vote accordingly and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana. mr. visclosky: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. visclosky: i rise in opposition to the amendment. i talked about a mix of energy sources in the future, what the intent of the amendment is. he obviously wants to return us
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to where we are in fiscal year 2011. would certainly point out for the record that at that level, $1 billion, we will be significantly below where we were last year, fiscal year 2010, when our spending level in this account was $2,240,000. the problem i have is where the money has come from and that is the weapons account. too oven and we saw it last -- too often, we saw it last week and hold the defense department harmless. the committee has recommended and it was carefully considered, an increase in the weapons account. if the amendment was adopted, the fact is we would be $296 million current year level. i have on numerous occasions in my district in conversations
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with colleagues on the floor and elsewhere suggested that it is time -- if we are going to solve our budget crisis in america for everybody to belly up on both sides of the equation and i don't care where you are getting your pay check or earning your contract money, i cannot believe if you are a defense function of the government of the united states, you can't find one penny, one cent of saving out of every dollar we spend. that comes out to 1%. i think at this point, 4.3% in the weapons program that is important as far as their safety, security and suretty is a step beyond that 1% that i have talked about in the last months. so with great respect to my colleague, i would oppose this amendment and would yield back my time. the chair: jabts. the gentleman from vermont. mr. welch: i move to strike the
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last word just for purpose of clarification. the chair: does the gentleman seek unanimous consent? mr. welch: yes. the chair: without objection. mr. welch: just a clarification. member from new jersey, vermont has about one-third nuclear power, that was misreported, one-third nuclear and one-third hydro and one-third other. mr. frelinghuysen: this is from the e.i.a. 22% is hydro and 72% is nuclear. nothing to be ashamed of. mr. welch: that is news to us in vermont and there is a dispute about the relicensing of the current nuclear plant we have. and i yield back. i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from vermont. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to.
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mr. welch: i request a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from vermont will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from kansas rise? >> i have an amendment at the desk. it's the nonpreprinted amendment. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. pompeo of kansas. page 23, line 4, after the dollar amount insert, reduce by $45,641,000. page 62, line 2, after the dollar amount insert, increase by $45,641,000. the chair: the gentleman from kansas is recognized for five minutes. mr. pomeroy: thank you, mr. chairman. the -- mr. pompeo: thank you, mr. chairman. this would increase the energy renewable program by $45.6
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million and the funding for d.o.e.'s vehicle technologies program. while i'm certainly 100% behind innovation and the development of domestic sources of energy and new vehicle technologies, this program is simply not the way to do it. we shouldn't take money from one set of citizens to subsidize companies that frankly have had subsidies for too long in the development of new energy vehicle technologies. it's a subsidy program plain and simple. the program is part of this president's administration's liberal agenda to replace the free market with government bureaucrats in determining which energy source we ought to use to propel our vehicles and for transportation. you know, we're already seeing tremendous advances in hybrid technology and electric vehicle technology in the state of kansas we have folks coming up with wonderful great, innovative ideas. they're seeking private capital markets to make that innovation happen. we have enormous venture capital firms that have made significant investment in these
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technologies. why would the government use taxpayer money to compete with those ventures? they don't need the subsidies, they'll make these things work. this is a quarter of a billion dollars in an r&d subsidy in a sector that has received subsidies for decades. and they know longer need that. they're -- and they no longer need that. they're far along. they can make these vehicles work. and the market will also choose them when they provide a technology that provides a cost effective solution for folks who want to drive their vehicles and for companies that want to move their products and goods all across our nation. you know, these subsidies comes in lots of forms and i've opposed them in every form. they come in our tax code, they come in the form of grants, they come in the form of other programs. both the house and the senate have recently rejected tax subsidies for specific fuel purposes already this year. this vehicle technology program should be no different. the president today said that we need to eat our peas. i suggest that he was suggesting that we need to do some
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difficult things, i happen to like peas. but he said we should do some difficult things. this is an easy thing. i would just as soon see this entire technology subsidy go away but my suggestion here in this amendment is only this, that we return to spending levels from 2008, just too two short years ago -- just two short years ago. i don't believe and i don't think the folks in kansas and across this country believe we spend too little meb money on vehicle technology subsidies in 2008. so i'd urge my colleagues to support this amendment and with that i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana. mr. visclosky: i move to strike the last word and rice in -- rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. visclosky: i i would point out that we have a vote pending in the house for a reduction of about $26.5 million from this account. this would be an additional
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reduction of another $45 million from this account. the gentleman noted that what his intent is is to get the vehicle technology program, if i understand him correctly, back to where we were in 2008. if i did understand him correctly i would suggest that that is why we are where we are today, because the levels for vehicle technology research were inadequate, totally inadequate in 2008. you drive by a gas station today and gas is $4 a gallon. all of us repeatedly are asked what are we going to do about gas prices? if we are not going to act as far as price fixing, collusion, cartels, monopolies, speculation and we can't do anything about the laws of supply and demand, i have indicated to my constituents the thing that congress can do most effectively
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for the price of gasoline is help our constituents buy less of it. if we can through vehicle technology research help everyone in this country get an extra mile per gallon we have helped them with the price of gasoline. if we begin to cut back to prior year levels as far as the investment in making sure people can move in this country as efficiently as possible and reduce our dependency on imported oil we are not going to make economic progress in this country and are going to continue to be held hostage to those overseas who send that oil to us for our dollars that they then use for other nefarious purposes. so again i think that this is ill-advised amendment, i think it takes us into wrong direction . we should be looking for ways to ensure that we do good research to get more miles per gallon and to make sure that the department of energy also, as they do this research, ensures that it is
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applied not for more power in cars but for more miles per gallon because again this is our taxpayers' dollars. so for those reasons again i would be opposed to the gentleman's amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: let me just say to the gentleman from kansas, he said he'd like us to at least go back to, in this particular account, to the 2008 level. maybe there's some consolation in our bill. we go back to 2007 in this account. and the bill is just beneath the overall allocation of our bill in terms of the final product is just beneath the 2016 level. you won't find too many bills on the appropriations docket that go back to those levels, recognizing this is 2011, our committee goes back to just below 2016 levels.
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so give us a little bit of credit -- 2006 levels. so give as you little bit of credit. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question son the amendment of the gentleman from kansas. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment say greed to. >> i would ask for a recorded vote. the chair: further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from kansas will be postponed. the gentleman from new york. >> yes, mr. chair, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. tonko of new york, page 23rks line 4, after the dollar amount insert the following, increased by $226,800,000. page 33, line 20, after the dollar amount insert the following, reduced by $226,800,000. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. tonko: thank you, mr. chairman. first i want to thank my
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colleague, the gentleman from new jersey, mr. vats, for offering this bipartisan amendment with me. is he a leader on energy issues and thank him for his support. mr. chair, the tonko-bass seamed simple. it will restore three specific results-driven energy efficiency programs within the fiscal year 2012 energy and water development appropriations bill. to last year's levels. it is neither a stretch nor an overreach, it is a balanced approach and it's fully offset. that is why i would like to ask unanimous consent to submit this letter of support for the record. the chair: the request is covered by general leave. mr. tonko: the following companies, organizations and associations all support the amendment and speak to its broad impact, the dow chemical company, the alliance to save energy, johnson controls, natural resources defense council, and approximately 75 more. i would also like to ask unanimous consent to submit two additional letters of support
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for the record. one from the southern states energy board and another from the united states green building council. the chair: the gentleman's request is covered by general leave. mr. tonko: thank you, mr. chair. first, this amendment will restore funding to the weatherization assistance program or w.a.p. w.a.p. is the largest residential efficiency program in our nation. it reduces the energy burden on low income families, the elderly and disabled and creates jobs, invests in local businesses and advances technologies. state-of-the-art technology. the 35% energy savings as a result of weatherizing homes under this program saves $437 in annual utility bills for the average homeowner. second, the amendment restores funding to the state energy program or s.e.p. s.e.p. is the only cost-shared program administered by the united states department of
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energy that provides resources directly to the states for allocation by the governor, for use in energy efficiency. this includes 56 state and territory energy offices and according to a study by the oak ridge national laboratory, for every $1 in federal s.e.p. funds, annual savings of $1.03 million source b.t.u.'s are saved along with the cost savings of $7,22 -- $7.22 and the leveraging of $10.71 on that same $1. finally the tonko-bass amendment restores funding to the building technologies program. buildings in the united states use about 40% of our total energy. and 2/3 of our electricity. as such this program seeks to promote american innovation and technologies to reduce operating costs to building owners which is vital in today's market. finally, mr. chair, this amendment has a net impact of zero dollars on budget authority and reduces 2012 outlays by $58
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million according to the congressional budget office. it does so by offsetting the increase of spending with cuts to the weapons activities account specifically to the readiness and technical base facilities account. the appropriations committee reports -- report suggests they are seriously concerned with the recent cost growth reported for construction of two major projects in the account. the committee report claims modernization will take several years and the considerable number of variables still at play argues against an excessively aggressive funding curve. therefore, mr. chair, i wish to close by saying i do not believe we can afford to slip any further behind our global competitors in energy investments. a vote for this amendment is a vote in favor of decreasing our dependence on foreign oil, creating local, private sector contracting jobs and providing state control on energy projects. again, i would like to commend the gentleman from new jersey for his leadership on this issue and thank him for his support. i urge adoption of this amendment and yield back the
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balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: mr. chairman, i move to strike the last word and rise in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: in order to increase funding for this energy efficiency and renewable account , the gentleman's amendment again suggests we decrease funding for weapons activities. as i said earlier, the modernization of the nuclear complex is critical, a critical national security priority and must be funded. reductions of this magnitude would be unacceptable and impact our ability and our nuclear security strategy. these are reductions in the nuclear account would be to increase for energy inefficiency and renewable accounts, primarily in the area of weatherization in the state energy program. for your information, these two programs have $3.4 billion in
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unspent funds from the 2009 stimulus and a full $2.7 billion is expected to be available for use in fiscal year 2012. they don't need anymore money. the department of energy needs to get the money out of the door and if they aren't capable, they need to make sure the states that have received money get money out of the door. so i therefore oppose the amendment. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from new hampshire rise? >> i strike -- i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you very much. as much as it pains me to oppose the position of my good friend from the state of new jersey, i rise in support of this very worthy amendment and want to thank my friend from new york for his sponsorship of it. mr. bass: as he mentions, it raises the weatherization assistance program by about $141 million, the state energy program by $25 million and the building technology program by
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$60 million. basically to level funded at the 2011 level and it's offset as was mentioned by a reduction of an increase in the nuclear security administration's weapons activities which would make that line item level funded as well. and i believe as has been said by my friend from indiana as well as my friend from new jersey that the weapons activities programs are laudable, especially as they relate to the safety and security of our weapons stockpile but i think level funding at 2011 levels is adequate. and when you look at the weatherization programs and what they do, you can't dispute it. low income individuals cannot afford to spend money on efficiency. it's just not possible. yet when they do it has a positive impact on all sorts of other programs. one of which is liheap. as was mentioned by my friend
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from new york these programs pay back on the order of seven, eight, nine, 10, $11 to $1 spent, not only in savings to low income individuals but also to the federal government. this is good for the economy, it puts people to work, it's good for energy efficiency and lessening our security on -- our dependence, ratherer, on foreign sources of oil, and it does contribute to the long-term national energy goals for this country as i see them. so all that mr. tonko and i are looking for is level funding for fiscal year 2011, for both the nuclear weapons program as well as the weatherization program, the state energy program and the building technology program which benefits so many people in so many different parts of america. so i urge adoption of this amendment and i yield back. . the chair: the gentleman from
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new york. mr. tonko: i move to strike the last word. the chair: gentleman ask for unanimous consent consent? without objection. the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. tonko: just to point out the statutory deadline for the weatherization program and the state energy program is in march 31 of any given year, in this case 2012. it's not all spent yet. there is expected to be an accelerated spending on these investments that are made. the drawdown on those monies will come in an accelerated way. and if we pull the rug out from these job creators at this stage, we stand to reduce employment among our private sector contractors, our builders and renovators. this program, what i have seen in new york, had a three-year waiting list. there is a great bit of good that comes from this program and
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i would think that everyone in this chamber is well served by investment in this program. i withdraw my request and yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from new york. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. mr. tonko: i move for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from new york will be postponed. the gentleman from new jersey. >> i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. garrett of new jersey, page 23, line 4, after the dollar amount, insert reduced by $300 million. page 24, line 18, after the dollar amount, insert reduced by $32 million. insert reduced by $167,500,000.
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after the dollar amount reduce -- mr. garrett: i ask unanimous consent that the amendment is considered as read. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes on his amendment. mr. garrett: i thank the chairman and i ask my colleagues to rise with me in support of my amendment which will save americans over $500 million. my amendment before us makes targeted spending reductions in order to do what? achieve significant savings that will contribute to our nation's fiscal wealth. we must take bold steps to reduce spending and i do commend my colleague from the state of new jersey for the hard work he has put in and i appreciate the comments he has already said on the floor, pointing out to the other side that in so many cases there is money in in these accounts and the money hasn't been spent and they have tried to rein in spending. they realize that our nation is
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on a path to bankruptcy and we have maxed out our nation's credit card. and while the committee did an great job in significant cuts, i stand here myself and the republican study committee believes we can go further than this. this amendment is a very reasonable amendment at showing this body is serious for cutting spending. the energy programs have been sold to the american public at basically wise investments that will yield vast new technologies whose costs will pale in comparison to the benefits later on. when you think about it, when you think about the billions and billions of dollars we have spent year after year, our energy infrastructure remains largely the same and we are still here today dependent upon foreign sources of oil and energy prices continue to spiral upward. the other side talked about wise
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energy policy. time and time again, federal energy programs have failed to live touch their potential. these federal programs have allowed the government to play vepttur capitalists and do so, not with your own money, but do so with the taxpayer monies. despite little return, they have little choice in making these investments. the taxpayers are commanded to make this investment every year. for example, the american people are being asked to invest millions of dollars into something called advanced solid state lighting. even if supporters concede it is far too expensive to compete. does this sound like something like an intelligent investor would do? i think not. but others would think so. america is home of ytsdz of
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investors and investors and the best way to encourage energy innovation and technology is to do what? use that marketplace and get out of the way and allow private capital to make those investments. it is in the marketplace where private individuals will assess the risks and the rewards and they will invest responsibly with their own money on projects that will merit further development. to conclude, considering the various precarious state of our economy and fiscal condition of our country, the government can no longer invest in these extremely risky and unproven projects without regard to loss and expense. government can no longer play the role of that reckless investor. we must eliminate the waste where it exists and encourage the government to spend the money in a wise and prudent money. i urge my colleagues to vote in favor of this amendment and fiscal responsibility.
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with that, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: i rise to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: and to speak in opposition. first of all, let me compliment my good friend and good friend from new jersey and i'm reluctant because he does his homework and has worked hard and i believe we need to reduce federal spending and have been going over a financial precipice. but we made a commitment and given a low allocation and had to meet that, but we have cut energy and water back to approximately 2006 level after multiple hearings. we have put into the bill more oversight. i believe we have made the tough choices. we have reviewed all accounts.
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we have put forth our responsibility for national security, national defense in the weapons program and nuclear navy, the next class of high ballistic submarines. we have done what -- and also made substantial investments in the army corps of engineers. but i'm reluctant to oppose his amendment, but we have made the tough choices and i yield back and urge members to oppose his amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from indiana. mr. visclosky: move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. visclosky: i rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment relative to cutting back to what i think are necessary investments in our economy, as far as research, both as far as renewables and fossil energy and as far as the science account. the gentleman mentioned advanced solid state lighting.
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it is my understanding that phillips has indicated that a small investment in manufacturing technology to improve the mechanisms as far as the construction and manufacture of these light bulbs would allow them to bring back jobs that are currently outsourced overseas if we make that investment and i hope we do. i join my colleagues to see if phillips electronics is good to their word, but at this point would state my objection and yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from new jersey. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair the noes have it. mr. garrett: i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings of the amendment offered by the gentleman from new jersey will be postponed.
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the clerk: page 23, line 4, after the dollar amount instert, page 32 line 4 after the dollar amount reduced by $60 million ,500,000,000. mr. wu: i rise today to urge my colleagues to save consumers significant costs in heating and cooling their homes and businesses. i'm joined by my colleagues from representative youngs and bass and tonko in this commonsense amendment. it's important because buildings use more energy than either transportation or industry. fully 40% of our energy is consumed by building systems and in homes. my friend, paul tonko said a figure that 70% of electricity in america is used in buildings.
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at a time of both record energy costs and record unemployment, we need to protect americans from crushing energy costs by improving the efficiency of existing and new buildings and homes. it's not just an issue for cold weather regions, like the state of one of my co-sponsors, representative young of alaska, it's also an issue to hot climates like what we have here in washington, d.c.,. even at this late hour, 8:30 p.m., you can hear the air conditioning straining to keep it cool. the costs for air conditioning the u.s. capitol is a fortune and costly at my 13-foot wide townhouse nearby the capitol and heating costs is a big issue in oregon. the building technologies program reduces the costs until homes and buildings by fostering
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private-public partnership to develop techniques and tools for making homes and businesses more affordable, productive and efficient. according to the department of energy, the building technologies program has resulted in fully 14 -- $14 billion of direct savings to the consumer, savings that has been re-invested in local economies. additionally since its founding 20 years ago, the building technologies program has saved the equivalent of over 12 billion gallons of gasoline. this amendment would return the building technologies program to just its current fiscal year 2011 funding level. this amendment will cost nothing extra, because it is fully offset by taking funds from the office of the secretary. according to the energy and water appropriations subcommittee report, quote, a
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significant fraction of the funding directed in prior appropriations reports to specified energy efficiency and renuble energy activities has been diverted by department management to other purposes in recent years. in some cases, as much as 12% of the funding directed by the congress for an activity -- has been diverted the offsets of this amendment will return the funds to the building technologies program as intended by this congress. this, my colleagues, is low-hanging fruit and we should pick it. i want to thank my colleagues, don young, charles bass and paul tonko for their joint sponsorship. and i urge passage and i reserve. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman cannot reserve or yield.
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the gentleman yields. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. frooling mr. frelinghuysen: i rise to strike the last word. i have noted that the bill reduces funds for energy efficiency and renewable of that account because the government needs to live within its means and really because they don't need any additional funding. this amendment increases that account despite as i said earlier $9 billion in unspent stimulus money. but perhaps the amendment i will tuesday straits how there is no -- illustrates how there is no room to increase funding as the amendment makes an unrealistic cut to departmental administration to do so. it's not responsible to cut administration and oversight, the very thing that both the ranking and i suggest that the
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department of energy needs more than anything. they need people to review their programs, provide accountability, meet the benchmarks we set, the time tables we have set and report back to our committee. so i oppose the amendment and urge others to do so as well. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment of the the gentleman from oregon. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have. it the amendment is not agreed to. >> i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: the gentleman neet needs to stand -- >> i ask for a recorded vote. the chair: further proceedings on the amendment by the gentleman from washington will be postponed. oregon, excuse me, will be postponed. the gentleman from georgia. >> mr. chairmanners i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will reported amendment.
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will the gentleman specify which amendment? >> it's 200,000. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. woodall of georgia. page 23, line 4rks after the dollar amount insert, reduce by $200,000. page 62, line 2, after the dollar amount insert, increase by $200,000. the chair: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for five minutes on his amendment. mr. woodall: thank you, mr. chairman. i realize $200,000 doesn't seem like a lot of money as we talk about the millions and billions and then on to trillions. but, mr. chairman, when i got this press release from the department of energy dated may 24, 2011, it read this, the u.s. department of energy together with the u.s. department of education today announces the launch of a new energy education initiative, america's home energy education challenge, to educate america's youth about
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the benefits of energy efficiency. now, mr. chairman, you know as i do this committee's been asked to make tough, tough decisions about how to allocate money in this appropriations bill and has done an amazing job in doing that and yet what we continue to see out of agencies from downtown is the creation of new programs. now you know as i know that we could go through an eliminate -- we could zero out this entire appropriations bill and we wouldn't be anywhere close to balanced. we could zero ewe out all the dis-- discretionary spending, it wouldn't be close to balance. and i wonder if folks downtown are getting that same message. now more than ever is not the right time to start a new program for which there is no demand and bring that to the american people. now, mr. chairman, i grew up before there was a department of energy and believe it or not in this program has targeted folks in grades three to eight, when i was in elementary school we had an energy efficiency program.
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there's a sign on the wall that said, please turn out the lights when you leave. there was another room in my younger days that had a bird and the light came right out through the beak, the switch came out through the beak that said, tweak the beak when you leave. lots of those things are going on in america's classrooms, mr. chairman. they don't need to originate from washington, d.c., they don't need the u.s. department of education, u.s. department of energy to get involved training children to turn out the lights. we've heard from speaker after speaker after speaker who's trying to move dollars around, to make sure that we're targeting our few dollars that we have at those critical cutting-edge technology programs, those critical research programs, those critical infrastructure programs and yet here we have a brand new program, mr. chairman, going to teach children to turn out the lights when they leave. i think that's a wonderful goal and i hope parents across america who are watching this tonight, mr. speaker, will take
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this as their push to go and begin that program at home if they haven't already, knowing how tight dollars are in my community, i'm sure families are already doing that. but this is a serious issue that requires folks across the board to come together to make the kinds of spending decisions that we have to make to dig ourselves out of this hole, creating new programs to do something that our state -- are state responsibilities, local responsibilities, family responsibilities. this is not the time nor the bill for it, mr. chairman. and i urge my colleagues to support this amendment, to cut these $200,000 and eliminate this new program, put these dollars in the spending reduction account before the new school year begins and thank the chairman and yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: mr. chairman, i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: to speak in support of the gentleman from georgia's amendment. he is so articulate, mr. speaker, so convincing.
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we're willing to accept his amendment. >> i appreciate the gentleman yielding. i want to thank the gentleman from georgia for providing us with a copy of the amendment ahead of time and would join in the chairman in accepting the amendment. mr. frelinghuysen: he made the convincing argument to the fact that you made reference to the department of energy news letter, a new program where maybe personal responsibility should be perhaps ahead of what they may suggest. so, i yield back. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from georgia. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. the amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> i have an amendment at the desk.
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the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. will the gentleman specify which amendment? >> the amendment relating to solar energy, $166 million. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. mcclintock of california. page 23, line 4, after the dollar amount insert, reduce by $166,143,000. page 62, line 2, after the dollar amount insert, increase by $166,143,000. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes on his amendment. mr. mcclintock: mr. chairman, this amendment saves $166 million by relieving taxpayers of having to subsidize yet another year of handouts to the solar industry. solar power is not some fragile new technology. photo volume take electricity was created in 1839, more than 170 years ago.
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and in more than 170 years of continuing research and development and technological advancement, not to mention untold billions of taxpayer subsidies, we have not yet invented a more expensive way to generate electricity. yet we're perfectly comfortable telling our constituents that we're taking another $166 million from their families this year to throw at this 19th century technology for no particular reason other than it makes us feel good. not only is this most expensive way we've ever invented to generate electricity, it also adds nothing to our baseline power. our electricity systems operate on an integrated grid, meaning we have to costly match the power going onto the grid with the power coming off the grid. and since there's no way to predict when a cloud passing over a solar array will immediately drop the output to zero, we have to construct an
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equal amount of reliable conventional power to back it up at a moment's notice. so in other words for every kilowatt of solar power we add to the grid we also have to pay to add an additional kilowatt of backup power. if this technology was truly on the verge of a breakthrough, it would be the hottest thing in the stock market right now and investors would be tripping over themselves to get a piece of the action. they are not and we have no right to take our constituents' money and put it into yet another losing proposition. we're told the solar industry's making great strides in the marketplace, lots of new jobs. well, that's true. but it's making those strides not on its own merit but solely because we're hiding its true cost from consumers through massive tax subsidies that in turn we're borrowing from the chinese. it's true that if you hand over $166 million of taxpayer money
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to certain solar corporations, well, those corporations are going to do very well financially. but their government-funded windfall comes at the expense not only of the hardworking americans who are the source of this largess, it comes at the expense of our ability to generate the most energy for the lowest price. perhaps it's just human nature that the more we invest in our mistakes the less willing we are to admit them. but with the mistakes of the last 30 years now contributing to the bankruptcy of our country and the impoverishment of our people, perhaps it's time to tell not only the solar industry but every part of the energy sector, get off the public dole, compete on your own merit and restore to consumers the accurate and unadulterated price signals that they need to make rational decisions in the marketplace. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time.
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the gentleman from indiana. mr. visclosky: mr. chairman, i would move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. visclosky: and rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment for reasons i have stated on other very similar amendments relative to energy research and to renewable accounts. and would point out there has been reference about the care that the subcommittee has taken as far as drafting this legislation. stated in the committee report language relative to solar tharkts committee encourages the department to include in its efforts disruptive solar energy utilization technologies, fabrication megses that -- messes that yield ultralow cost solar sells -- cells and technologies designed to simulate the operation of solar cells and other methods to yield advanced sciences. the committee also recommended that no funding for solar demonstration zone projects, as the department has adequate facilities at its existing laboratories so, they certainly
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recognize they do not want money expended in that area, the committee also indicated in its report what drn report that it is aware of the significant cost inefficiency advantages solar films can provide to thin film and silicon modules and we encourage the department to ex pabbed the funding of solar film research and development. so again, the moneys that are provided which are very tight, are also very thoughtfully put forth with very directive language by the committee and for that reason i do oppose the gentleman's amendment and would yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york. i'm sorry, california. >> move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. garamendi: i rise in opposition to this amendment. we clearly have to move away from fossil fuels. in order to do so we need to understand the other opportunities are available to us, indeed solar's been around for a long time but also in the last decade to 15 years there's
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been extraordinary increases in the efficiencies of the solar systems. and they continue to increase. this is not the time for us to back away from the future. it's time for to us move aggressively forward, providing the research, providing the incentives to move to a new source of energy. now if you want to continue to pollute the atmosphere, then stay with coal, if you want to continue to be indebted to the pet row dictators of the world, then stay with oil but with you need to move away from that. and this money in this particular part of the bill provides us with the opportunity to seize the next generation of power and that is the sun. yes, the sun's been around a long time. warming us and providing us with what we need to survive. we need to use it more effectively and efficiently and that's what this money allows us to do. removing the $154 million is exactly the wrong thing to do.
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i oppose the amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: to oppose this amendment but to agree with the gentleman's concern about the use of the taxpayer dollar. in this account which we've been debating for perhaps an hour and a half, i don't think any program has probably had a larger cut than the solar program. perhaps for the very reasons the gentleman raises there. solar technologies have been around for a long time, we have a fairly viable public sector. i do think we still need within the department of energy people in the department of energy to put together and provide some degree of expertise and advice to a variety of different entrepreneurs. so i reluctantly oppose the amendment but certainly know that his is in the right place and i -- his heart is in the
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right place and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question son the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the gentleman from california. mr. mcclintock: on that i'd ask for a recorded vote. the chair: further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. the clerk will read. the clerk: page 23, line 11, electricity delivery and energy reliability, $139,496,000. nuclear energy, $733,633,000. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will dress nate the amendment or read the amendment -- will designate the amendment or read the amendment. the chair: amendment offered by mr. schiff of california. page 24, line 6, after the
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dollar amount insert, reduce by $10 million, increase by $10 million. the chair: the gentleman from california is recognized for five minutes on his amendment. mr. schiff: thank you, mr. chairman. my amendment is very simple. of the $7 3 million appropriated -- $733 million appropriated in this bill for energy research it separates out $10 million to spend on the cooperative effort with nasa to restart plutonium production that is plutonium 238. advancing nuclear energy technology was the initial mission of the expect -- department of energy and it was hugely successful, developing technology now used in power plants and deep space missions. this last focus is one of the smallest, they spend -- they generate plutonium 238 for nasa and other purposes this program
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began in the 1950's, they flew in all the apollo missions, and since. unfortunately in the early 1990's, the u.s. shut down plutonium 238 production. since then, the u.s. has been using stockpiles and depending on russia for them. russia has refused to continue this and we are almost out of the stockpiled, so we must restart production. over five year the cost of the project is estimated to be between $75 million and $95 million. it would be funded by nasa an d.o.e. as nasa has the largest need for the power and deform o.e.
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has the expertise. the $10 million requested this queer in the nasa budget was included in the c.j.s. bill making its way through the committee this 50-50 cost share has been the norm in the history of the program. in the context of the nuclear energy research budget which receives a modest increase in this bill, this is a very small project but it would have an outsized influence on our ability to do the kind of space exploration no one else in the world can. it may also provide an opportunity for national security agencies to pursue important projects that would otherwise not be available. i hope every member can support this amendment so we can continue the long history of space exploration for which this nation is known around the world. with that, mr. chairman, i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields
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back. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: i rise to oppose the gentleman's amendment but let me thank him for his historical perspective and for his own deep knowledge which he shared with many of us in the house of the necessity in term of space exploration. the gentleman's amendment increws -- increases funding for the plutonium research project as it's call tosmed do so, other activities would have to be cut, including advance -- advanced reactor research and small modular reactor, licensing and research. the administration proposed this new project for several years in order to increase domestic supplies of plutonium 238.
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the vast majority of this material would be used by nasa for in-space power supplies and only a small fraction would be used by the department of energy. unfortunately, after the committee repeatedly expressed concerns since fiscal year 20 10, the administration once again proposed in the 2012 budget request for the department of energy to share a full half of the project's financial cost. the administration has neither altered its stance nor addressed or acknowledged the committee's concern about this disproportionate sharing. the funding plans in the budget request and the amendment simply don't make sense, particularly given the other critical priorities in our bill. as we've expressed for two years, the administration must develop a more sensible plan. therefore i oppose the amendment and urge members to do likewise. the chair: the gentleman yields
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back? mr. frelinghuysen: i yield back. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey, mr. holt. mr. holt: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. holt: i would like to make a brief comment in support of the gentleman's amendment. as he said and as i would like to reiterate, there's a class of space exploration that cannot be carried out without these r.t.g.'s, our domestic supply is unreliable at best, essentially nonexistent and it takes a while to regenerate that. i strongly support the gentleman's move to restart that program so that we can have a reliable domestic program for deep space exploration that cannot be conducted any way with other energy sources. and i think it is a reasonable amendment. it's not overstated.
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and i would urge its adoption. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from indiana. >> i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> i rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment. i certainly appreciate, again, his seriousness in offering it. mr. visclosky: i appreciate what he wants to accomplish. but the history of this has been discussed by a number of speakers. the fact is, there have been presidents of both parties who have made this recommendation over the last three years. there has been directive language in this committee by both political party over the last three years and there is a benefit to another agency outside the department of energy, they ought to pick up a rm cost, there ought to be an agreement and until that is done, with all respect, i rise to oppose the gentleman's amendment and yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back. the question is on the amendment by the -- offered by
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the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes visit. >> mr. chairman, on that i request the yeas and nays. the chair: pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. the gentleman from california. >> i have an amendment at the deffing. the chair: the clerk will read the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. fware men dee of california. page 24, line 6, after the dollar amount, instert increase by $20 million. page 24, line 18, after the dollar amount, insert, reduced by $20 million the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes on his amendment. >> mr. chairman. the chair: the gentleman from indiana. mr. vi closeky: i reserve a point of order on the amendment. the chair: the gentleman reserves a point of order. the gentleman from california.
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mr. garamendi: this amendment provides $7 million plus for nuclear research. the purpose of my amendment is to carve out of that $700 plus million a sum of $20 million to restart america's program on recycling spent nuclear fuel. we currently call this spent nuclear fuel a waste. when in fact, it still possesses about 97% of the energy that was originally in the uranium and then processed once through the light water reactors. the purpose of the amendment is to restart. in the 1960's, 1970's, 1980's, america undertook a program to close the nuclear fuel cycle. that was abandoned in 1994 after a successful effort to recycle and to wruse that
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energy that is found in the nuclear fuel. unfortunately, now this spent nuclear fuel which we call a waste product is sitting at every reactor in the united states and mostly around the world. creating a significant hazard. we only need to think about fukushima's little swimming pool that went dry and the meltdown that occurred at that point. we need to recycle and completely use or as much as possible completely use the energy in these spent nuclear fuel pools. if we do so, we can do it in a way that significantly reduces the hazards, significantly reduces the longevity of the problem from some 200,000 to some 300 years and create an enormous energy opportunity. this is a beginning. there's a long path ahead of us and we have to start on this
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immediately. that's the purpose of this. unfortunately, it's going to be ruled out of order, however in the future, as we move forward, i would hope that the committee and this house and the nat deem fit to put this kind of program back into action. with that, i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: i don't reserve. my -- i continue to reserve my point of order. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. frelinghuysen: i strike the last word to speak briefly on the bill. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. frelinghuysen: i rise to oppose the amendment and i will seek to insist on my point of order to make a few comments. the gentleman's amendment prescribes a path forward for the back end of the nuclear energy fuel cycle by directing the department of energy to develop a specific type of reprocessing plant and
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facility, the integral fast reactor. i appreciate our colleague from california's passion for moving forward our nation's gentleman ji for hand -- strategy for handling spent nuclear fuel and i thank him for the many time he is approached me on this issue. i and many of my colleagues share the gentleman's concerns and i have asked the administration to move forward with at least one piece of the solution, the yucca mountain repository. however, there is ongoing debate about the closed -- the back end of the fuel cycle. there are several options but they are far from straightforward and can be aaccomplish -- and can be accomplished by using competing technologies. we must carefully evaluate the highly tech thi call issues to
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address the economic safety and nonproliferation that accompany any fuel cycle option. the gentleman's amendment chooses one winning technology and i believe it deserves more careful evaluation before moving forward and i insist on my point of order. the chair: does the gentleman wish to speak on the point of order? the gentleman will state his point of order, please. mr. frelinghuysen: mr. chairman, the amendment proposes to amendment portions of the bill not yet read. the amendment may not be considered en bloc because ofout lays in the bill, i ask for a ruling from the chair. the chair: does anyone wish to speak on the point of order? mr. garamendi: i do. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. garamendi: i think the point of order is out of worder.
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the issue before us is of utmost importance to the nation and the world as more and more light water reactors are built, the problem of spent fuel continues to mount and creates hazards. the united states did in fact figure out how to close the nuclear fuel cycle. getting to that point -- the chair: the gentleman needs to speak to the point of order. mr. garamendi: i am working towards that. the chair: the gentleman needs to speak to the point of order. mr. garamendi: i will yield back my time and take up the judget later. the chair: the chair is prepared to rule. to be considered en bloc, an amendment must not propose to increase the levels of budget authority or outlays in the bill. because the amendment by the gentleman from california proposes a net increase of the levels of outlay in the bill it may not avail itself of clause 2f to address portions of the
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bill not yet read. the clerk will read. the clerk: page 24, line 7, fossil energy research and development, $476,993,000. the chair: the gentleman from california. mr. garamendi: this amendment is to put -- the chair: does the gentleman have an amendment at the desk. mr. garamendi: i do. the chair: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: amendment offered by mr. garamendi of california. after the dollar insert, reduced by $450 million. page 24rks line three, after the dollar amount, insert increased by $450 million. mr. garamendi: the reason for the amendment is we have to
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move off the 19th century fuel that is coal and oil and move to future energy sources. one of which i talked about a few moments ago, the knew career. the other energy sources are out there. we've discussed on this floor here over the last hour the issue of solar. there are fuels, advanced biofuels, there are also wind, solar, wave, geothermal, all of these are being advanced at this time by the arpa-e program within the department of energy. that's where the future is we can make a choice about staying with the past and try to figure out how to create clean coal which is probably the oxcy moron of the century, or -- the ox moron of the serk -- oh oxy moron of the century, or we can look at what we need to do.
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the purpose of this is to shift $450 million into arpa-e to look for energy systems of the future providing the support that they need both in the research and in the early development of those resources. . there has been much success in this area. there have been numerous research programs done at the department of energy facilities but at universities around this country that have modeled after the arpa-e program. and it works. we have seen major scientific break-throughs that have occurred as a result of the arpa-e program. if this amendment were to be adopted, it would be a big program, one that has the potential of advancing this nation's future and freeness in
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the case of petro oil from the dictators of the world and coal and the extraordinary problems that coal brings to the communities throughout this nation. i understand the coal industry and it is our desire to continue to dig for coal, but we know at some point, we have to move away into the future and this is what this amendment would attempt to accomplish. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from indiana rise? mr. visclosky: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. visclosky: i rise in opposition to the gentleman's amendment. i appreciate his comments about arpa-e and appreciate the purpose behind its creation and would certainly acknowledge that it would appear that arpa-e, that there is a new culture, if you would, at that element of
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the department of energy to move projects along and to have a conclusion to research. as i indicated in my opening remarks in general debate on this bill, i wish the department of energy had brought the same vigor and that same commitment that they had to arpa-e to existing programs at the department of energy, because my concern is that at some point in time, we have too many programs that are going to solve the problem and we are tripping over each other. at this point, we have 46 energy frontier research centers and there is a request to add three to eight more. we have a new administration and it is not unique to the obama administration that at the department of energy, we need as i could characterize a new silver ball to chase around. we need new hubs so people can
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talk to each other about critical research. a at this point in time, there are three hubs in place for about 18 months, and two more are called for totaling five. we need a bioenergy research center. and there are three in the united states, one in berkley, california and oak ridge, tennessee and there is research at the institute that was established in 1997. i at this point in time would like to make sure that arpa-e works over a long ter term as advertised and that the department takes that culture that is being developed at arpa-e and infuse it into these programs and show the congress of the united states that there
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is communication between these numerous programs before we provide any additional monies over and above those called for in the bill. i would oppose the gentleman's amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: i move to strike the last word. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. frelinghuysen: i associate myself with the ranking member's comments on arp-e. our amendment would add funding, which receives $100 million in our bill. but the way he would do it would be virtually to eliminate funding for the fossil resevere and development program causing excessive job losses and i think the program makes major contributions. we can't forget that fossil fuels, coal, natural gas, generate 70% of our nation's electricity.
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arpa-e may some detail generate a much greater percentage than perhaps it does today, but we are a long way from there. so i would oppose the gentleman's amendment and using the fossil fuels account for this additional money he suggested and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. the gentleman from california. >> ask for a recorded vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will be postponed. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. frelinghuysen: i move that the committee do now rise. the chair: those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
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accordingly, the committee rises. the speaker pro tempore: mr. chairman. the chair: the committee has reported no resolution there. the speaker pro tempore: the committee has had under consideration h.r. 2354 and has come to no resolution thereon. the chair lays before the house the following personal requests.
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the clerk: leaves of absence requested for mr. danny davis and ms. brown of florida the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the requests are granteded. mr. frelinghuysen: i move that the house adjourn. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the motion to adjourn. those in favor say aye. . those opposed, no. . the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly the house
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>> tomorrow morning, the british house of commons will investigate allegations of illegal phone hacking. the company's "news of the
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world" newspaper shut down last weekend over the controversy. live coverage from london begins at 6:30 a.m. on c-span2. president obama said earlier that he is continuing to meet with congressional leaders to get a deal on deficit and debt reduction. the president spoke to reporters prior to this afternoon's meeting with congressional leadership. >> i met with congressional leaders yesterday. we will be meeting again today
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and we will meet every single day until we get this thing resolved. the good news is that all leaders continue to believe rightly that to it is not acceptable for us not to raise the debt ceiling. and to allow the u.s. government to default. we cannot present the united states faith and credit for the first time in our history. we still have a lot of work to do to get this problem solved. let me make a couple of points. first of all, all of us agree that we should use this opportunity to do something meaningful on debt and deficit. the reports that have been out there have been largely accurate that the speaker and myself had been in a series of conversations about doing the
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biggest deal possible so that we can actually resolve our debts and deficits challenge for a long stretch of time. i appreciate the speaker's good- faith efforts on that front. what i'd synthesized to the broader group of congressional leaders yesterday is now is the time to deal with these issues. if not now, when? i have been hearing from my republican friends for quite some time that it is a moral imperative for us to tackle large debt and deficit in a serious way. i have been hearing from them that this is one of the things that is creating uncertainty and holding out -- holding back investment on the part of the business community. let's go. it is possible for us to construct a package that would be balanced, with share
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sacrifice, would involve both parties taking on their sacred vows, would involve some meaningful changes to medicare and social security and medicaid that would preserve the integrity of the programs and keep our sacred trust with our seniors and make sure those programs were therefore not just this generation, but for the next generation. that is possible for us to bring in revenues in a way that does not impede our current recovery, but is fair and balanced. we have agreed to a series of spending cuts that will make the government leaner, meaner, more effective, more efficient. and give taxpayers a greater bang for their buck. that includes defense spending, some programs that i like very much. it would be nice to have them, but we cannot afford them right
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now. did you look at this overall package, we could achieve a situation in which our deficit were at a manageable level and their debt levels were stabilized and the economy as a whole would benefit from that. moreover, i think it would give the american people an enormous confidence that this town can do something once in awhile. that we can define the expectations in terms of short- term politics and the next election and every once in awhile, we break out of that and we do what is right for the country. i continue to push congressional leaders before the largest possible deal. there is going to be resistance. there is resistance on my side of it -- to do anything on entitlements. there is strong resistance on
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the republican side to do anything on revenues. if each side takes a -- once 100% of its ideological predispositions, we cannot get anything done. i think the american people want something done. they feel a sense of urgency about the breakdown in our political process and about the situation in our economy. what i have said is that -- bring back to me some ideas that you think will get the necessary number of votes in the house and senate. i am happy to consider all options, all alternatives. the things that i will not consider our aid 30-day or a 60- day or 90-day temporary stopgap
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resolution to this problem. this is the united states of america. we do not manage our affairs in three month increments. we do not risk u.s. defaults on our obligations because we cannot put politics aside. i have been very clear to them. we're going to resolve this and we are going to resolve this for a reasonable period of time. we will resolve it in a serious way. my hope is that we will come up with a plan that solves our short-term debt and deficit problems, avoid defaults, stabilizes the economy, and proves to the american people that we can actually get things done in this country and in this
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time. with that, i will take some questions. >> thank you very much, mr. president. given that you are running out of time, can you explain your plan if republicans continue to oppose? if it came down to that and congress went that route, would you consider that? >> i will not sign a 30-day or a six-day extension. that is not an acceptable approach great if we think that is going to be hard now, imagine how these guys will be thinking six months from now in the middle of an election season. it is not going to get easier. we might as well do it now. pull off a band-aid.
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eat our peas. now is the time to do it. if not now, when? we keep on talking about this stuff and we have these high- minded pronouncements about how we have to get control of our deficit and how we owe it to our children and grandchildren, let's step up. let's do it. i am prepared to do it. i am prepared to take on significant heat from my party to get something done. i expect the other side should be willing to do the same thing if they mean what they say, that this is important. let me comment on this whole issue of tax increases. i want to be crystal clear. nobody has talked about increasing taxes now. nobody has talked about increases next year.
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what we have talked about is starting in 2013, we have gotten rid of some of these abrasions loopholes that are benefiting corporates jet owners. as part of a broader package, we should have revenues and the best place to get those revenues are from folks like me, who had been extravagant -- who have been fortunate. what i have also said, if you do not like that formulation, i am happy to work with you on tax reform that could lower everybody's rates and broaden the base. as long as that package was sufficiently progressive so that we were not balancing the
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budget on the backs of middle- class families or working-class families. we won't let hedge fund managers or authors of best- selling books off the hook. that is a reasonable proposition. when you hear folks saying, the president should not want massive job killing tax increases when the economy is this week. nobody is looking to raise taxes right now. we're talking about 2013. in fact, the only proposition that is out there about raising taxes would be if we do not renew the payroll tax cut that we passed in december. i am in favor of renewing it for next year as well. there have been some republicans who have said that we should not renew it. if we did not renew that, the $1,000 that have been going to the typical american family,
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that lapses. that weakened the economy. i have been over backwards to work with the republicans to try to come up with a formulation that does not require them to vote to increase taxes. identify a revenue package that makes sense that is commensurate with the sacrifices we are asking other people to make. i am happy to work with you to figure out how else we might do it. >> [inaudible] >> i do not see a path to a deal if they did not budge. . if the basic proposition is it is my way or the highway, we are probably not going to get anything done. we have democrats controlling the senate.
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we probably are going to need democratic votes in the house for any package. if mr. auto and john boehner are sincere, and i believe that -- mr. mcconnell and john boehner are sincere, they will have to compromise dislike democrats are going to have to compromise. -- just like democrats are going to have to compromise. >> you said that everybody in the room is willing to do what they have to do. isn't the problem the people who are not in the room? only 24% of americans said that you should raise the debt limit to avoid an economic catastrophe. that you andblem others have failed to convince
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the american people that we have a crisis? >> let me distinguish between professional politicians and the public at large. the public is not paying close attention to the ins and outs of how treasury auction goes. they should not. they're worried about their families, their jobs, their neighborhood. they have a lot of other things on their plate. we are paid to worry about that. depending on how you phrase the question, if you said to the american people, is a good idea for the united states not to pay its bills and create another recession, that could throw millions of more people out of four, i feel pretty confident that i could get a majority on my side on that. that is a fact. if we do not raise the debt ceiling and we see a crisis of confidence in the markets, and
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suddenly, interest rates are going up significantly and everybody is paying higher interest rates on their car loans, mortgages, credit cards, and that is sucking up a whole lot of additional money, i promise you they will not like that. i will say that some of the professional politicians know better. for them to say that we should not be raising the debt ceiling is irresponsible. they know better. this is not something that i am making a lot. this is not something that tim geithner is making not. we are not out here trying to use this as a means of doing all these really tough political things, i would rather be talking about stuff
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everybody wellcome's, like new programs or the nfl season getting resolved. unfortunately, this is what is on our plate. we have to deal with it. what you are right about is that leaders in the room have to step up and do the right thing regardless of the voices in our respective parties that are trying to undermine that effort. i have a stake in john boehner successfully persuading his caucus that this is the right thing to do. >> [inaudible] >> i think he has been very
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sincere about trying to do something big. i think he will like to do something big break his politics within his caucus are very difficult. you're right. this is part of the problem. a political process where folks are rewarded for it saying irresponsible things to win elections or obtained short-term political gain but we are in a position to do something we have not always lay the groundwork for. it is going to take some work on his side. it is also going to take some work on our side. the vast majority of democrats on capitol hill would prefer not to have to do anything on entitlements. would prefer not to have to do anything on some of these debt
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and deficit problems. i am sympathetic to those concerns. they are looking after folks that are already vulnerable and already hurting. what i have tried to explain to them is if you look at the numbers, medicare will run out of money and we will not be able to sustain that program no matter how much taxes go up. it is not an option for us to sit by and do nothing. if you are a progressive who cares about the integrity of social security and medicare and medicaid and believes that it is part of what makes our country great, that we look after our seniors and will look after the most vulnerable, we have an obligation to make sure that we make those changes that are required. if you are a progressive that
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cares about investments in headstart and student loan programs and medical research and infrastructure, we're not going to be able to make progress in those areas if we have not gotten our fiscal house in order. the argument i am making to my party is, the values we care about, making sure that everybody in this country has a shot at the american dream and everybody out there with the opportunity to succeed if they work hard and live a responsible life and the government has a role to play in providing some of that opportunities for things like to the loans, making sure that our roads and highways and airports are functioning, making sure that we are investing in research and development for the high-tech jobs of the future. if you care about those things, you have to be interested in figuring out how we pay for that.
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we're going to have a sales job, this is not pleasant. it is hard to persuade people to do hard stuff. that entails trimming benefits and increasing revenues. the reason we have a problem is that people keep a boarding pass. it is time for us to take it on. -- keep avoiding this. it is time for us to take it on. >> [inaudible] in the $4 trillion deal, it seems like we are now 4 to 1 spending to taxes. that does not seem very fair to democrats. if you could clarify your social security position, would any of the money from social security go towards the deficit? >> with respect to social security, social security is not
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the source of our problems. social security is part of a package -- it would be an issue of how do we make sure social security extend its life? the reason to make sure those benefits are there for seniors in the out years. if you were going to take a bunch of tough votes, you might as well do it now. as opposed to trying to muster up the political will to get something done further down the future. with respect to a balanced package, is the package we are talking about exactly what i would want? no. i might want more revenues.
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and fewer cuts to programs that benefit middle-class families that are trying to send their alls to college or benefit of us because we are investing in medical research. i make no claims that somehow the position that john boehner and i discussed reflects 100% of what i want. but that is the point. i am willing to move in their direction in order to get something done. that is what compromise in tails. we have a system of government in which everybody has got to give a little bit. what i will say is that the revenue components that we have discussed would be significant and would target folks who can most afford it. if we do not do -- you may hear the argument that, why not just
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go ahead and do all the cuts and we can debate the revenue issues in the election? you'll hear that from some republicans. the problem is that if you do not do at the revenues, to get the same amount of savings, you have to have more cuts. it means that seniors or poor kids or medical researchers or our infrastructure that suffers. i do not want a deal in which i am asked to do nothing and i am able to keep hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional income that i do not need while a parent out there
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who is struggling with sending their kids to college find they have a couple hundred dollars less in grants or student loans. that is what the revenue debate is about. if they're going to solve the problem, there are a finite number of ways to do it. if we do not have revenues, it means you are putting more of a burden on the people who can least afford it. that is not fair. >> [inaudible] with unemployment at 9.6%, [inaudible] what do you say to members of your own party?
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>> our biggest priority is getting the economy back on track and putting people back to work. i am absolutely convinced that the steps we took in the recovery act saved millions of people their jobs. were created a whole bunch of jobs. part of the evidence of that is as you see what happens with the recovery act phasing out. when i came into office, and budgets were hemorrhaging at the state level, part of the recovery act was giving states help so they would not have to lay off teachers, police officers, firefighters. as we have seen that federal support for states diminish, you
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have seen the biggest job losses in the public sector. teachers, police officers, firefighters losing their jobs. my strong preference would be for us to figure out a way that we can continue to provide help across-the-board. i am operating within some political constraints. whatever i do has to go through the house of representatives. what that means is that, on the options that are available to us is the payroll tax cut. it might not be exactly the kind of program that i would design in order to boost employment, but it does make a difference because it puts money in the pockets of people who are spending tens. expanding its ad businesses large and small. that gives them more customers and it increases demand.
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that would be a components of this overall package. unemployment benefits, again, puts money in the pockets of folks who are out there knocking on doors trying to find a job every day. giving them those resources. that puts more money into the economy and that improves the climate for businesses to want to hire. as part of a component of the deal, it is important to look at the steps we can take short term in order to put folks' back to work. i am not somebody who believes that just because we've solved the deficit and debt problems, that automatically solves the unemployment problem. i think we will still have to do a bunch of stuff, including trade deals that are before congress right now that could add tens of thousands of jobs. republicans gave me this list at
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the beginning of this year as a priority, something they thought they could do. now i am ready to do it and so far, we have not got the kind of movement i would expected. we have the potential to create an and the structure bank that could put construction workers to work right now rebuilding our roads. those are still areas where i think we can make enormous progress. i do think that if the country as a whole sees washington act responsibly, compromise is being made, the deficits and debts being dealt with fourth time, 15, 20 years, that will help with business is feeling more confident about aggressively investing in this country,
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foreign investors sank, america that has its act together -- america has its act together. it can have a positive impact in overall growth and employment. it is not the only solution. we will still have to have a strong jobs agenda, but it is part of a solution. it is the primary solution that the republicans have offered. they keep on going down there and saying, what are you doing about jobs? when you ask them what they would do, they say, we have to big government spending under control. i say, ok. let's go. where are they? this is what they claim would be the single biggest boost. what is the holdup? with respect to social
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security, as i indicated earlier, making changes to these programs is so difficult that this meat -- this may be an opportunity for us to go ahead and do something smart that strength in social security and gives future generations the opportunity to say, this thing is going to be there for the long haul. that may not be possible. your gasoline right. social security is not the primary driver -- you are absolutely right. we do want to make sure that social security is going to be there for the next generation. if there is a reasonable deal to be had on it, it is one that i am willing to present. >> [inaudible] >> i will not get into the details right now of the negotiations.
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i might enjoy negotiating with you. [laughter] that is what i figured. >> [inaudible] you said that economists would agree that a deal needs to be made. have you worked with u.s. business leaders to raise the debt ceiling? if so, who are you talking to? >> i of spoken extensively to business leaders. i think that business leaders in the abstract want to see a resolution to this problem. what i have found is that they're somewhat hesitant to wait in on some of these issues -- weigh in on these issues because they have a whole lot of
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business pending before congress and they do not want to make anybody mad. this is a problem of our politics and politicians, but it is not exclusively a problem of our politics and politicians. the business community is a lot like everybody else. we want to cut everybody else's stuff and we want to keep our stuff. we want to cut our taxes, but if you want to raise revenue with somebody else's taxes, that is okay. that kind of mind-set is why we never get the problem solved. there have been business leaders, like warren buffett, who have spoken out forcefully on this issue. some folks made it very clear that they would agree to a balanced approach, even if it meant for them that they would -- if they were seen slightly higher taxes on their income
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given that the average ceo saw a 23% raise this past year. the average worker saw a 0-1% raise last year. i think there are a lot of well- meaning business people will recognize the need to make something happen. i think they have been hesitant to be as straightforward as i would like. this is what a balanced package means. it means that we have some spending cuts, some increased revenue, and it means that we are taking on some of the drivers of our long-term debt and deficits. >> [inaudible] can you say whether or not the administration is working on a contingency plan? " we're going to get this done by august 2.
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>> you said that the speaker [inaudible] do you have complete confidence that he can deliver the votes? the scene in control of his caucus? >> that is a question for the speaker -- the think he is in control of his caucus? >> that is a question for the speaker, not for me. my experience with john boehner has been good. i think he is a good man who wants to do right by the country. the politics have swept him into the speakership. they're good for a midterm election, they are tough for governing. part of what the republican caucus needs to recognize is that american democracy works when people listen to each
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other, willing to give each other the benefit of the doubt. we assume the good intentions of the other side and we are willing to make some sensible compromises to solve the problems. i think there are members of that caucus to have not police arrived at that realization yet. >> -- who have not fully arrived at the realization hit. >> your confidence in him were not shaken? >> these things are a tough process. a big deal would require a lot of work on the part of harry reid and nancy pelosi and myself to bring democrats along. the point is that if everybody gets in the boat at the same time, it does not tip over. 's famousbob dole co
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comment back in the 1990's. that is always the case when it comes to difficult tasks like this. last question. >> mr. president, i want to revisit the issue of sacrifice. in 2009, you said that [inaudible] now that these budget cuts are as well as people who are scared of losing jobs, fearful. and also, what say you about the congressman's bill, the debt- free america act? do you support that bill? are you supporting the republican bill that is similar to his? >> i am not going to comment on a particular bill right now.
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i will speak to the broader point you are asking about. this recession has been hard on everybody, but obviously, it is harder on folks who have less, and the thing that i am obsessed with, and have been since i came into office, is all those families out there who are doing the right thing, every single day, who are looking after their families, who are just struggling to keep up, and just feel like they are falling behind, no matter how hard they work. i got a letter this past week from zero woman whose husband had lost his job, he had pounded the pavement, finally found a job, they felt like things were
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stabilizing for a few months. six months later he lost the second job and now they are trying to figure out how to make ends meet. and there are just hundreds of thousands of folks out there who really have seen as tough of an economy as we've seen in our lifetimes. now, we took very aggressive steps when i first came into office to yank the economy out of a potential great depression and stabilize it. and we were largely successful in stabilizing it. but we stabilized it at a level where unemployment is still too high and the economy is not growing fast enough to make up for all the jobs that were lost before i took office and the few months after i took office. so this unemployment rate has been really stubborn. there are a couple of ways that
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we can solve that. number one is to make sure that the overall economy is growing. and so we have continued to take a series of steps to make sure that there's money in people's pockets that they can go out there and spend. that's what these payroll tax cuts were about. we've taken a number of steps to make sure that businesses are willing to invest, and that's what the small business tax cuts and some of the tax breaks for companies that are willing to invest in plants and equipment -- and zero capital gains for small businesses -- that's what that was all about, was giving businesses more incentive to invest. we have worked to make sure that the training programs that are out there for folks who are having to shift from jobs that may not exist anymore so that they can get the training they need for the jobs that do exist, that those are improved and sharpened. we have put forward a series of proposals to make sure that regulations that may be
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unnecessary and are hampering some businesses from investing, that we are examining all of those for their cost and their benefits. and if they are not providing the kind of benefits in terms of the public health, and clean air and clean water, and worker safety that have been promised, then we should get rid of some of those regulations. so we've been looking at the whole menu of steps that can be taken. we are now in a situation where because the economy has moved slower than we wanted, because of the deficits and debt that result from the recession and the crisis, that taking a approach that costs trillions of dollars is not an option. we don't have that kind of money right now. what we can do is to solve this
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underlying debt and deficit problem for a long period of time so that then we can get back to having a conversation about, all right, since we now have solved this problem, that's not -- no longer what's hampering economic growth, that's not feeding business and uncertainty, everybody feels that the ground is stable under our feet, are there some strategies that we could pursue that would really focus on some targeted job growth -- infrastructure being a primary example. i mean, the infrastructure bank that we've proposed is relatively small. but could we imagine a project where we're rebuilding roads and bridges and ports and schools and broadband lines and smart grids, and taking all those construction workers and putting them to work right now? i can imagine a very aggressive
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program like that that i think the american people would rally around and would be good for the economy not just next year or the year after, but for the next 20 or 30 years. but we can't even have that conversation if people feel as if we don't have our fiscal house in order. so the idea here is let's act now. let's get this problem off the table. and then with some firm footing, with a solid fiscal situation, we will then be in a position to make the kind of investments that i think are going to be necessary to win the future. so this is not a right or left, conservative-liberal situation. this is how do we operate in a smart way, understanding that we've got some short-term challenges and some long-term challenges. if we can solve some of those long-term challenges, that frees up some of our energies to be able to deal with some of these short-term ones, as well. all right?
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thank you very much, everybody. >> now we will get reaction from house speaker john boehner on debt talks. he spoke to reporters and took questions for little under 10 minutes at the u.s. capitol. >> good afternoon, everyone. i appreciate what the president said today about the need for us to come together and get this done. our disagreements are not personal and they never have been. but the gulf between the two parties now is about policies, not about process and not about personalities. the president and i agree that
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the current levels of spending, including entitlement spending, are unsustainable. we do not agree on his view that government needs more revenues through higher taxes on job creators. the president and i also disagree on the extent of the entitlement problem and what is necessary in order to solve its. most americans would say that a balanced approach is a simple one. the administration gets its debt limit increase and the american people get their spending cuts and their reforms, and adding tax increases to the equation does not balance anything. the american people understand that tax hikes destroy jobs. the last thing we should be doing right now at a time of 9.2% unemployment is enacting more government policies that will destroy jobs. what the american people want is for us to work together to
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remove government barriers that are getting in a way of job creation and real economic growth. one of the biggest obstacles to job growth that we face are out of control entitlement spending and the current tax code. i think the fundamental questions are this. can you control government spending without fundamentally reforming entitlements? i think the answer is no. do you need to raise taxes in order to get control of spending? i think the answer is no. if you want to see an increase in government revenues, let's grow the economy and create jobs, broaden the tax base, and lower rates. acidic to rubio said, what we need are not new taxes, we need you tax players -- as a senator rubio said. none of us are fond of loopholes. our disagreement is on the idea
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of raising taxes on the very people we are asking to create jobs and our country. i would agree with the president that the national debt limit must be raised. i am but he made the case for it today. the american people will not accept, and house cannot pass a bill that raises taxes on job creators. the house can only pass a debt that bill that includes spending cuts larger than a hike in the debt limit as well as real restraints on future spending. my colleagues and i believe we should enact a balanced budget amendment to keep the federal government from spending us into the same situation again. i think we also need real reductions in spending right now and spending caps to ensure that any progress we make is not undone in the future. i agree with the president, we cannot allow our nation to default on our debt. to prevent a default, a bill must pass the congress, and a
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bill that does not meet these tests cannot pass the house of representatives. this is the message that we will take again to the white house today and hope that we can work our way through this. >> you have anywhere from 80 to 100 people on your side that do not want to increase the debt ceiling, no matter what. how can you get past that? >> i think that whatever agreement we come to is going to have to pass the house and senate on a bipartisan basis. >> an extraordinary moment today with the democratic president saying we need to cut entitlements. he also praised you for making a good-faith effort to deal with this issue. on a personal level, are you disappointed at this moment seems to have gone away, this
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idea of a big agreement that would truly deal with the deficit crisis? >> we have been involved in very sincere and honest negotiations and honest discussions. i think the president and i both understand that the nation faces a very difficult decision. clearly, there is no personality difference between the president and i. i get along with him fine. this boils down to two things. i said it on saturday night. the president continues to insist on raising taxes, and they are just not serious enough about fundamental entitlement reform to solve the problem for the near to intermediate future. i want to get there. i want to do what i think it's in the right interest of the country, but it takes two to tango, and they are not there yet.
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>> you talked to the president about a massive tax increase. >> there were no tax increases ever on the table. there was never any agreement to allow tax rates to go up in any discussion i have ever had with the white house, not once. >> the president today said he is prepared to take significant heat from his party to get something done. are you not willing to take similar heat? if you are, where? >> i understand this is going to take sacrifice and political capital on both sides. i am certainly willing to take my fair share, but if we are going to take political capital, let's step up and do the right thing for the country. >> what kind of non tax
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revenues, if any, have you guys rejected as a compromise on your part to bring revenue to the equation? >> as you are very well aware, there was a big conversation underway about revenues, revenues in the context of tax reform, lowering rates, broadening the base, which would encourage more economic activity and real growth and our economy, that would result in additional revenues to the federal government. there is in fact a way to do this, but we are not -- that conversation cannot continue if they are not serious about fundamental reform of the entitlement programs. >> i am sorry, but i have to go to the white house. thank you. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011]
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>> senators will continue debating the debt and deficit next week while house members take another spending bill dealing with energy and water development programs. keep up-to-date with c-span of the congressional chronicle, with video of every house and senate session, the daily schedules, committee hearings, and more information about your elected officials. >> speaking at a jobs summit today, u.s. chamber of commerce president donahue urged congress
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to raise the debt ceiling quickly. that is up next on c-span. then remarks from congressman barney frank, who chaired the house financial services committee when the banking regulations law was signed last year. later, a look at the illegal phone tapping allegations by rupert murdoch's news corp. the companies news of the world newspaper shut down last weekend over the controversy after 168 years of being in business. on tomorrow's "washington journal," we will continue our conversation on the debt and federal deficit. then, bill miller of the u.s. chamber of commerce on debt ceiling talks, jobs, and that the economy. after that, george washington university law professor michael a bramah weeks -- michael
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abramowicz. "washington journal," each morning at 7:00 a.m. eastern, here on c-span. later, house secretary kathleen sebelius testifies about the medical payments advisory board. the commission would make recommendations on how to bring down medicare costs. live coverage from the house budget committee at 10:00 a.m. eastern. [applause] >> the u.s. chamber of commerce held a summit on the u.s. economy and jobs. >> welcome to the chamber. i would like to extend my appreciation to stand and the campaign for free enterprise for organizing this event today and to all of the chamber staff
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members who have been working on it for such a long time. to inform our discussion today, the chamber has been holding these listening sessions across the country with small business entrepreneurs and local chambers and we have also commissioned a study with harris interactive. we did did this to find out what job creators were thinking, and what is going to take to expand businesses and hire more people. these main street businesses are telling us play and simple to start hiring -- they need faster economic growth, and we need a change in cost in washington. that is my message today as
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well. three years ago, we suffer the worst financial crisis and deepest recession since the great depression. now we are caught in the slowest and weakest recovery since the depression. in other recoveries, growth came roaring back, and with it so did jobs, but that is not happening this time. this reality was brought home to us once again with the very disappointing jobs report released in this country on friday. new job creation has slowed to a trickle. unemployment is up to 9.2% and over 16% when you include part- timers who cannot find full-time work and those who have dropped out of the work force altogether. that is where we stand today, and to make matters worse, we have already tried the
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traditional school that are commonly used to enter a recession and rev up an economy. the government has spent nearly $800 billion on a stimulus package, pushed interest rates down to near zero, filled the financial system with liquidity, and front to the economy with new tax breaks and more deficit spending. still, the recovery is weak. growth is slow, and jobs just are not coming back in the numbers we need or as fast as necessary. so where we go from here? what do we do now? ladies and gentlemen, the answers do not rest with bigger government. the answers can be found in the proven principles of the american free enterprise system. we need to grow this economy in a big-time way. stronger and faster economic growth is the best way to
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successfully put americans back to work. to generate that growth and create those jobs, we must clear away the impediments government has imposed. we must reduce the uncertainty that discourages business from expanding and hiring. we must stop wringing our hands and start acting quickly and boldly to solve our problems. we must recapture what america can do, that americans. that will install new confidence in consumers and investors. growth will not solve all of our nation's challenges right away, but we can do a helluva lot more with growth and we can do without it. businesses will get more customers, government will get more revenues, and more
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importantly, americans will get more jobs if we focus on growth. so what must we do to get the stronger and faster growth we need to put americans back to work? i would like to suggest a few steps. some that can help create joe -- growth and jobs right away, and others will help over a longer period of time. for simple reason, there has been plenty of talk about these ideas, but precious little action. if there is one thing we don't need right now in washington, in july there is a lot more hot air. we need action to spur this economy and create jobs, and we need it now. if i can say something parenthetically, i was sitting at the table here talking to one
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of our staff members whose husband has a very interesting company in maryland that is doing very well until we heard last week's that four times this year -- is a small company -- they will have to pay $200,000 more for their unemployment insurance. that is almost a million dollars on a compound the bases. these are the challenges when the government is employing or supporting our people. we need to do it in the private sector. how do we go about this? what really works? first, let's start with trade. it is time to finally enact the free trade agreements with south korea, columbia, and panama. in the jobs are at stake. 380,000 of them. that is how many jobs we will lose to our competitors in a very short time, who have
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already cut deals with south korea and colombia. with these agreements in place, confirm, we can create tens of thousands of jobs of our own. our negotiators should also reached broad agreement on the transpacific partnership by november. asia is the fastest-growing region in the world, and american workers and businesses can supply those markets. so let's get moving. our largest trading partner overall, or customer, is the european union. we can generate up to about $120 billion in new trade simply by removing tariffs on each other's products. not services, just manufactured products. that would be a down payment on a broader deal with such an
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important trading partner. that adds up to serious jobs. we don't think about this very much, but the second thing is the subject of travel and tourism. a sector critical to the u.s. economy, to u.s. growth and job. this is a $700 billion industry that provides 7.4 million american jobs. guess what? when foreigners visit here, they spend their money, and that is our largest export. we have not made that the easy in recent times, and we need to promote tourism to create american jobs right now. to bring more of our friends from round the world here, we need to put the welcome mat back out. that means vigorously promoting what we have to offer, just like
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other countries do all the time. it means reducing the hassle factor of visiting the united states without compromising security. we should bring more countries into the visa waiver program, which is a budget neutral way of creating more jobs in the travel and tourism sector. our businesses tell us all the time that before they can hire more people, they need more customers. let's bring the customers here. 95% of the world customers live outside of our borders. many economies that are growing much faster than ours. they like american products. they like american culture. unlike americans, and they have a lot of cash. so let's go sell them something over there and bring them to the united states as a visitor's and investors and then sell them
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something here. it is a quick way to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in this country. the next subject, or the third issue, is very hard to address without upsetting people, but it is important to think about it. it is a critical industry on which american growth and jobs have long depended, and that is the housing and construction sector. the housing market remains very, very weak. despite low mortgage rates and low prices which have made homes far more affordable than ever before, this is a big drag on economic growth. families are unwilling to spend as long as their primary asset, their home, is under water and losing value. it is a big drag on jobs, with housing and construction workers suffering from double digit
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unemployment, in some areas up to 30% of people that have those jobs are currently unemployed. there are no easy or nice answers to the housing crisis. banks moved to reject government initiatives have encouraged it. even with assistance, some homeowners will have no choice but to enter for closure, and we must face that reality that there will not be lasting improvements in the housing market until the backlog of foreclosures is cleared an existing inventory is reduced. though their actions over the last two decades -- through their actions, politicians have proven they can really mess up the housing business.
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we need their help right now. governments should be smarter this time around and avoid the temptation to endlessly prop up those who sadly will never be able to afford the home of they now live in. instead of delaying the day of reckoning, even further, our policy makers should let the market take its corrective course. the sooner that happens, the faster this key section of our economy will recover and start building and hiring month again. very much related to that is the subject and the fourth issue of infrastructure. one way to put some of these construction workers back on the job is by investing in infrastructure. last year, the chamber released a groundbreaking study proving that investments in infrastructure can be directly linked to stronger economic growth.
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i am not talking about wasteful stimulus projects driven by politicians. i am talking about the kind of thoughtful, strategically planned improvements that expand our capacity to grow our economy and compete in the world markets. congress should act now to reauthorize the coarse surface transportation, aviation, and water resource programs. they all create jobs. with adequate funding plan, execute, and hire. they cannot do that with an endless string of short-term extensions of these programs. congress, the administration, and the states need to address the rules, the disincentives and other impediments that have locked away potentially $190 billion in private capital that could be invested in infrastructure.
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unleash that money, and you can create a lot of jobs right now. while i fully understand that high gas prices are a hardship for american families, we must also boost public investments at infrastructure without adding to the deficit. the gas tax, which is a user fee -- you drive on the road, you buy the fuel, you pay the tax. this user fee has not been increased since 1993, 18 years ago. let's not forget that gas mileage for cars and trucks has increased substantially since then, which means that as fuel efficiency increases, receipts to the highway trust fund decrease. a truck that drive all over this country has more than double the
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mpg in had 18 years ago. and there are more of them. finally, we are paying about 40 percent of what we used to pay to repair and upgrade roads and bridges and transit. it does not sound very sensible, does it? the result, are rapidly crumbling infrastructure with less and less money to rebuild it. under these circumstances, it is not unreasonable to suggest that we face in a modest increase in the gas tax over time. we talked about housing and infrastructure. these things are related because of jobs. let's talk about domestic energy. we should also produce more energy of all types, use it at home, and sell it abroad. we have plenty of it. people did not think so for a long time, but we have a lot of
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it, allowing american industry to go get it would not cost the government a sense. fact, it will increase government revenues, create jobs, and hence our national security, and release us from the grip of some unfriendly governments. recently i wrote a letter to the president, outlining specific steps he could take to move the administration in that direction. i noted that the u.s. department of energy has estimated that the united states have in excess of one trillion barrels of oil off our shores along. we also have a huge natural-gas resources. we have already experienced a national-three natural-gas renaissance in this country. increased domestic production has driven natural gas prices down, and that has brought some manufacturing back to america, and i believe it could sharply
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-- could bring most of the chemical companies that moved to the middle east or africa to get low-priced national -- natural gas to come back here to the united states. let's keep things moving in a positive direction. by some estimates, increased access to federal energy resources could create an additional $150 billion in federal and state revenue and add more than 500,000 jobs in this country in a relatively short time. we must also continue to build the energy infrastructure in order to deliver affordable and reliable supplies of fuel and power, which will also create a lot of jobs. that is why the ministration should allow the construction of the keystone pipeline connecting canada and the united states refineries in texas.
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that one project alone would create 250,000 jobs and involved $20 billion in investment in the united states. this is not a complicated decision. horowitz the sixth issue -- the sixth issue we should look at is the question of regulatory uncertainty and reform. you have heard me mention the need to remove regulatory impediments and address uncertainties and delays in getting projects approved. in our listening sessions around the country, and in the harris survey, the regulatory burden and the uncertainty surrounding these new regulations were repeatedly cited as a major reason not to expand our payroll. i don't think our friend from maryland is going to expand his, either, with an $800,000
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increase in his unemployment expenses. can you blame these businesses? these are smart people. they do not know what is going to hit them next. that is what worries them the most. no new jobs. in addition to dealing with 170,000 regulations already on the books, that me say up front, many of them needed. there are hundreds of major new rules and the pipeline generated by the health care law, the dodd-frank finance law, the labor department changes in how companies are going to have to operate, and especially what the epa is doing while nobody else is looking to drive up the cost of doing what may be important, but to do it in zero way that is not want to help us create jobs. we are not against all regulations and we can see the need for a lot of new ones, but
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the combined weight of all these regulatory activity is something we have never seen before in this country. it is unjustified and uncalled for in a free society and is killing american jobs. we need to fundamentally rethink our regulatory system. for one thing, congress has ceded to much authority to an unelected fourth branch of this government, the regulatory agencies. before undo major regulation takes effect, the congress ought to be required to have an up or down vote. i am not talking about every regulation that has ever passed, but if it costs $500 billion, the people that are putting someone else to do their dirty work ought to have to vote up or down with their names. there should be a stronger burden of proof placed on the
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regulators to show that the rules they are proposing are sound, justified, and reasonable. in addition, one major factor hobbling our recovery is the inability to build anything anywhere on a timely basis. by reforming the process, we can start generating new economic activity now, faster than we could under the old system. how'd we do it? most internalimit reduced to six months. that is ample time for a thorough review of most projects. if experts do not believe that a project will have any significant environmental impact, that's speed it through. if your review is required and the state has already done a successful review, why did it twice? when the reviews involve more
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than one government entity, the administration should require the designation of a lead agency so this thing can get done quickly. as noted in a preliminary recommendation of the council, but business and job creators some speed and clarity. if you want slow job creation, leaving it alone. if you want fast job creation, let's fix it. tell them yes or no, but give them a timely answer. we then come to a serious question that is holding many companies, large and small, domestic and international, back from putting more money in this economy. that immediate challenge is the debt ceiling and deficits. it is the question of what this does to affect our ability to
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create jobs. i am not -- i am not going to make a comment that some may not like. they may not believe or want to hear, but congress needs to raise the debt ceiling and it must do so without delay. it is an unfortunate reality, but it must be done. failure to do so would have grave consequences for main street businesses and for every family in this country. it would drive up interest rates. it would drive the market down. the dollar and our economy down, and it would take today's economic uncertainty and expand it to destructive levels. investors will turn away from the united states and take their job-creating capital with them. we are calling upon the leaders of both parties to make tough choices and come to closure.
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they need to agree on a plan now to raise the debt ceiling, and also agree on a plan that controls our deficit and debt level going forward. this requires first and foremost, major spending cuts and entitlement reforms. by following the approach as i have suggested, the government can also generate a lot of new revenue, not by raising tax rates, but by spurring growth, creating more taxpayers and prudently developing of our natural resources. let me recap. we can spur growth and create jobs by expanding trade, tourism, infrastructure, and energy, by reforming regulations and the permitting process, and by raising the debt
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levels while also cutting government spending to reduce uncertainty and put our nation back on the road to fiscal responsibility. these are important and urgent priorities, but we must also embrace a broader long-term agenda to ensure of america's growth, its competitiveness, and its prosperity. time does not permit me, and your patience will not allow me to discuss all of the elements of this broader agenda, but clearly we need to develop and attracted the world's best talent. we must maintain our unsurpassed leadership in higher education while reforming schools and strengthening our vocational and technical schools. we need comprehensive immigration reform that is humane, efficient, and
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economically smart. we need to carefully examine our work force needs at all skill levels and adjust our visa and immigration programs accordingly. we need to make easier for the world's best and brightest to study and train in the united states and in be allowed to stay here. this is important. if companies and institutions cannot find the talent in america, they will have to send the work to where the talent resides. our nation must also remain the global leader in science, research, and innovation. that is one of the reasons we need those very smart people. to do so, we need the strongest, most balanced, and most effective patent system in the world. there is some very good legislation pending right now, an excellent start, and we have to get this done.
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we must have strong intellectual property protection. the cornerstone of the american economy and the catalyst for innovation. intellectual property is protected war in the united states and elsewhere, and the money, people, and jobs will come here. alongside talent, there is a need for capital. to create new industries and future jobs, we have the most attractive, transparent, competitive, and barbara capital market in the world, historically. these markets breathed life and success in to ideas and innovations and reasonable risk of american onto burners and businesses can be successful. i can assure you that the chamber is working every day on efforts to fix our schools, to
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reform immigration and visa rules, to strengthen patents and intellectual property rights, and of course, our legal system, and repair the excesse'' of the dodd-frank bill while working to effectively improve our capital markets. the same must be said for healthcare, where the number of exploding regulations and organizations needs to be dealt with. we still must find genuine solutions to all of these costs, separate out the regulations that are really needed from the ones that are causing us not to create jobs. ladies and gentlemen, nothing is more important to america, to the american dream, and creating american jobs. that is what it says right on the front of this building. despite all the bad economic use what -- is we have had -- all
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the bad economic news we have had, we cannot get discouraged. we must not indulge in despair. we can create american jobs it will remember who we are and what made our nation so successful in the past. it is not about bigger government, dividing up an existing economic pie. it is about a free enterprise system that creates a bigger pie, with more opportunities for all our systems. government does have a role to play, and we need them to make sure that the rules are clear and fair. today in addition to fixing these fundamental, the most important role the government can play is to remove the impediments and uncertainty that have slowed over grow and shackle our job creators. by unleashing economic growth and freeing our job creators to do what they do best, we can and
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will put americans back to work. these are clearly challenging times, but there is no problem facing us that does not have a solution. the answers clearly are not quick or easy, but there are answers and they are almost always made in america. we have so much going for us. we have strong demographics, abundant national resources. the world's most productive workers and businesses, an unquenchable thirst for entrepreneurship, and a long history of picking ourselves up when people think we are down. we talked to a young man who created his first company at the ripe old age of 13. enrico went on to create two more businesses and today he is the co-founder of the company
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that specializes in the lighting efficiency. he is still a few years short of his 25th birthday. that is the spirit of entrepreneurship that makes america successful. those were the ages of the people that are celebrated in this room that led to the founding of this country and this great economy. is the spirit of enterprise that makes america's successful and unique. as long as america welcomes and encourages october north, as long as we continue to stand up for the principles of free enterprise and limited government, and as long as we will reward rather than punish the dreamers, the doers, the risk takers, and those who have the most significant success, we will always come out on top. something to think of, but a long road to get there. thank you so much for coming. thank you for your patience, and
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please listen carefully to those that are here today and then go out and put on the heat. the heat is simple, let's do it now, let's do it in an ordinary -- orderly way, and let's not wait for someone else to do it to us. thank you very much. [applause] >> barney frank defended the financial regulations measure signed into law one year ago. he was critical of efforts to change parts of the new banking law. he spoke into questions at the national press club for just over an hour. >> thank you, and that reference to my colleague, michelle laughlin -- michele bachmann, reminds me that you might ask your editors for dual pay because you will also be covering the republican presidential campaign.
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three declared republican presidential candidates sit on the financial-services committee. i hope people will not have to get past secret service to get to our committee meeting, but i don't think we have ever had three declared presidential candidates on the committee before. i want to begin by saying that i believe that the years of study, that examination, advocacy, etc., please this legislature holding up very well. there have been few calls for any substantial amendment on the part of the financial-services committee. one of the things that people
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were pointing to as criticism is the fact that what the bill does in many cases is to set forth some important principles, but gives the regulators the ability to apply them in practice. there are two reasons for that. first of all, in 2010, you cannot decide for the indefinite future what specific numbers ought to be. secondly, to the extent when you legislate that you get very specific, you are inviting the people about whom your legislating to evade what you did. the more -- for many years, people in the financial community were telling us to be more like england where they did principles and not rules. we do think we need rules, but
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you cannot legislate some of these very important questions. as people have come before the committee, and have talked about taking into account international competitive factors with regard to imposing a margin on end-users, talking about an american subsidiary based in a foreign country, dealing with reject the regulators had the ability to deal with that. the way the volker rule was written, the regulators have the flexibility that does good without doing harm. that is true in a number of other areas. the only issue where i saw wasle unhappy in the bank's the amendment sponsored by former center of lincoln. i thought it was more important to have rules for derivatives
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wherever they were. i am struck at how little advocacy there has been for a very substantial change. i think that things are moving well in the international front. when i was about to become chairman of this committee in 2006, we were being told we had to cut back substantially on american regulation because everybody would go to more welcoming jurisdictions. about a year-and-a-half later, the era of light touch regulation is over. we no longer have that and america is in the lead for pushing for an international set of standards which are better. some of our friends in europe understand that because there were european countries like germany where people did not make subprime loans.
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they just went bankrupt because other people did mainly in america. there is a degree of interconnection. by the way, we were told in 2008 by the bush appointees, ben bernanke and hank olson and others, that we were facing something as bad as the great depression. it could have been worse than the great depression because 80 years ago, there was a grad angularity to the economy. things could be going very bad in one place that they could be going good in another place. these are now interconnected. you will not get the same. some of our friendly competitors underwent such turmoil themselves in last few years and are worse off than we are today because we have dealt
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with this stuff more forthrightly. in no longer have this -- many of your payment institutions are complaining loudly to the regulators that america is nicer in compensation. there are some legitimate issues that have to be addressed. imposing margin requirements on end users in other countries is one. some of the institutions sometimes found like a 14-year- old child of divorced parents trying to play money against a daddy. the regulators have been talking and i don't think we see any [unintelligible] that includes a capital surcharge for financially substantial institutions. when the republicans have a hearing on international competition, two industry witnesses, one representing a
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bank organization and one expert from harvard who has been a supporter of the phantom industry, both noted there was a potential competitive disadvantage for large american financial institutions because we are so firm in not allowing bailout. they noted that america has by far the strongest anti-public participation in bel alton locke and rules in the world. -- in and bail out -- in bailout rules in the world. we have heard of the gift that keeps on giving. this is the gift that people keep on refusing. unanimously, any institution about which there is any discretion as to whether or not it is designated as
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systemically importance has vehemently asked not to be. the notion that this somehow gives you a benefit -- apparently these people have become very self sacrificing. people do not want to be designated. i pointed this out to governor trullo at the federal reserve. we want to help get rid of the perception of too big to fail. lehman brothers is the only example of a major financial institution in a developed country that was allowed to fail.
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the evidence clearly puts this to rest the notion that we did not deal nottoo big to fail. there are a couple of areas where i see the attack coming. my republican colleagues, on like climate change and health care, don't want to take this one had on. it is still too popular. coming to the defense of unrestricted derivative trading is not a popular cause. they are coming at it sideways. they want to use the deficit as an excuse for under-funding the sec and cftc. they have a small percentage of what we're wasting trying to build infrastructure in afghanistan. the notion that the $90 million more that we need for the cftc because of the deficit is nonsense.
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they want to turn the sec into a profit center. you have a catch-22. first denied the sec and the cftc adequate funding. they in turn will not be able to deal with the rulemaking requirements that they have. because they have not been able to move as quickly on the rolls, the rules have to be abolished. that is something they have imposed. you want the sec and the cftc to have smart people and good information technology. this does not come from the financial institutions. if you've got the rules,, you want them will run.

Tonight From Washington
CSPAN July 11, 2011 8:00pm-11:00pm EDT

News/Business. News.

TOPIC FREQUENCY Mr. Frelinghuysen 26, California 22, New Jersey 14, Vermont 13, Mr. Visclosky 12, Mr. Garamendi 10, Indiana 9, Georgia 9, Washington 9, New York 8, Mr. Welch 8, John Boehner 6, Nasa 6, Mr. Garrett 4, Sec 4, Mr. Holt 3, Oregon 3, Mr. Mcclintock 3, Mr. Chair 3, D.c. 2
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